Generative AI Startup Cohere Raises $270M
Enterprise generative AI startup Cohere has raised $270 million in a Series C funding round led by Inovia Capital along with Nvidia, Oracle, Salesforce Ventures, and other major players in AI development and deployment. Cohere is known for its work in grafting generative AI and natural language processing tools to customer service and other business tools.
Cohere’s generative AI provides a platform for developing enterprise services. Cohere formed from leading researchers at Google Brain and emerged from stealth in 2021. The Google connection continues as the company relies on Google Cloud and its supercomputers to set up and train its LLMs. Google Cloud’s AI and machine learning hardware and infrastructure powered Cohere’s development of its LLMs.
The company also recently began working with conversational AI provider LivePerson. LivePerson has partnered with natural language processing developer Cohere to enhance its services with custom Large Language Models (LLMs). The two companies are running a pilot program to deploy generative AI for customer service and other business needs by adapting Cohere’s LLMs for LivePerson’s Conversational Cloud platform.
“AI will be the heart that powers the next decade of business success,” Cohere CEO Aidan Gomez said. “As the early excitement about generative AI shifts toward ways to accelerate businesses, companies are looking to Cohere to position them for success in a new era of technology. The next phase of AI products and services will revolutionize business, and we are ready to lead the way.”
As Voicebot founder Bret Kinsella points out in our Synthedia newsletter, Gomez’s focus on business clients portends a larger change in generative AI focus. It’s one embraced by a growing number of other startups in the field, such as Jasper, who recently debuted a marketing-specific package of generative AI tools, and Anthropic, who recently raised $450 million to expand upon that proposition.
“As enterprises consider taking generative AI to production, new requirements emerge. Some include greater control over the production environment, model performance, and user data. Cohere and companies such as Anthropic are leaning into the idea that today’s generative AI leaders maintain control over model performance and data,” Kinsella wrote. “That messaging requires some awareness building which will be one focus for the new round of funding. In addition, bringing generative AI into enterprises is new to nearly every company executive. Educating the market will be a key element of success, and you can see that Cohere is already ramping up its educational resources.”
The amount Cohere raised is significant, as is the collection of investors, which also include recent customers like Salesforce. Nvidia’s involvement is especially notable since the South Korean tech giant has been pouring resources into generative AI hardware, services, and partnerships that have ensured it will be able to shape the industry meaningfully for a long time to come.
“We are at the beginning of a new era driven by accelerated computing and generative AI,” Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said. “The team at Cohere has made foundational contributions to generative AI. Their service will help enterprises around the world harness these capabilities to automate and accelerate.”